Saturday, November 09, 2019

Life By The Numbers

As I age, I find more so than ever, that numbers take on more significance. I suppose they always have taken some prominence in my life as I was (and still am) an accountant during my survival years. I don't use the word survival lightly. How often do many of us work away at something that is basically a kind of spirit destruction for the artist within, toiling, collecting the cheque, toiling some more, looking for better toiling and so on and so forth.

In those toiling years. I squeezed a lot in of the creative nature. Around the edges of my life. There was never enough time to express that aspect of myself then. So I pack it in now, even as I'm slowing down.

I was sorting my weekly pills into the dispenser this morning. A weekly task. It takes 15 minutes. About 30 pills a day including the supplements of niacin and turmeric and magnesium et al. It's a slow process as I tend to drop the little guys on the floor or on my lap. Not so much today but some days. You know.

We are forgetful as we age. I was supposed to go to the opera with a friend today but I think she forgot and I was glad. It was her first opera and it was probably my 6th time seeing it. Madame Butterfly. Not that I minded, I love it, but the whole getting ready thing, organizing thing. Well, you know. And then a kind of mandatory coffee thing after. I just wanted to be home. In my PJs doing creative stuff.

But I played the magnificent Humming Chorus from it and it never fails to make me cry. So cry I did. Sublime.


When I was desperate for work in the old days, or desperate for anything, a shaman advised me to face east in the dawn and hold out my hands and tell the universe I was ready for work. And then go out, broke as maybe, and give something to a far needier person than I. It always worked. I never expected anything from my actions, I should add. It was a spontaneous thing. On Thursday I gave my 80 year old cleaning woman a small raise. She never asked for it, it was just that she takes care of me in little extra ways. She was over the moon. She kept saying: you like my work, you like my work! And on Friday a totally unexpected project came into my inbox, one I will definitely enjoy and will be compensated very well for. A referral. Something oddly numerically karmic about that.

And a very odd thing. I say odd. Because I remember thinking a while back when a man I knew who was dying looked up a high school sweetheart and they totally fell in love again and she was with him for his last couple of years. I remember thinking, she went into this knowing it would all end in tragedy and heartbreak. Could I do that?

But the heart does what it does. And the brain can't stop it. And recently I met a man who is dying and I want to pull away. Now. Immediately. And the heart says absolutely not. I can't explain it. But now I understand. Numbers again. Do they matter?

My Christmas cactus. A little confused (like me)



25 comments:

  1. That's a nice cactus flower plant. Lovely. You and David are both accountants, and you both made a living as accountants. This is not what I can do. I don't have the ability to crunch numbers. Words I can do, but not numbers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am also a wordsmith as you know Gigi with published work and more to come. I had to shove much of that aside to support me and my kids.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  2. I like the shaman's wisdom and will try to remember to do it -- both parts.
    Whatever you decide, between your heart and head, will be right.
    Kate

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sunday morning, like now, is pill sorting day for me. Takes about five minutes because of pill splitting.

    Madame Butterfly always makes me cry.

    Your cleaning lady is old.....and I guess quite fit.

    At your age you don't need to 'protect' yourself so don't pull away from emotional interaction. I am trying hard to be better at it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am going with the flow I think Andrew, it is something completely unexpected and lovely in its way.

      You're a rank amateur in the pill department. I'm around 10 minutes.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  4. How many years I was an accountant, to support the kids and me. How sad they do not value doing what I had to do, vs. what they wanted. It's part of a new world order, I believe.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not sure who you meant by "they" Joanne, your employers or your family?

      The sloggy old years, glad they're behind me.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  5. 30 pills a day?? I have 3 that are essential and a few vitamins that are optional and expensive so I don't take those everyday anymore.
    I've never seen the whole of Madame Butterfly, only bits here and there and that's enough for me. Opera isn't my thing. I can appreciate the talent involved, but not the length of the shows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was introduced to opera at a young age and I think that was key to my enjoyment of it. I'm on a lot of BP pills, so that accounts for much of the ingestion. :)

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  6. The advice from the Shaman is very intriguing and I am impressed with your experiences following it. I intend giving it a try. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're welcome Ramana, I've been consistently astonished at how much this has worked over about 25 years now. I never put expectations on it, I just feel good after doing it.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  7. Wow, 30 pills, have you looked in to cutting any of them out?
    One doctor has you on that many prescriptions?
    I am sorry , not trying to be nosy , worried about an overabundance of everything.
    Worried about you being able to stand up straight at all taking so many. Or thinking clearly. I am sorry to be so forward. Concern is my thing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No no problem Gemma. Like I mentioned to River BP are a whole pile of them it's been very difficult to "normalize" and right now it's not great but acceptable for my age. Around 15 a day for BP alone, the rest are Lodalis as I won't take statins and metformin + supplements and pain killers. I don't take any mind altering substances whatsoever. Though, seriously. 100% of my friends do.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
    2. About the man... years of a marriage can be torture or not.Lots of hurt strung out over time.
      This could be short term ecstasy ,but, ecstasy all the same, why pass that up?

      Delete
  8. Some very good thoughts there WWW! On reading your words, "Could I do that?" a song came immediately to mind - song by Garth Brooks called "The Dance" -some of the lyrics:

    Looking back on the memory of
    The dance we shared beneath the stars above
    For a moment all the world was right
    How could I have known you'd ever say goodbye
    And now I'm glad I didn't know
    The way it all would end the way it all would go
    Our lives are better left to chance I could have missed the pain
    But I'd have to miss the dance
    Holding you I held everything
    For a moment wasn't I the king
    But if I'd only known how the king would fall
    Hey who's to say you know I might have changed it all
    And now I'm glad I didn't know
    The way… .....


    Don't miss the dance, WWW - even if it's a metaphorical dance. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good advice T, I look forward to the adventure if adventure it is. Who knows? World like a loose garment and all that and that is a beautiful poem. I also love Leonard Cohen's Dance Me to the End of Time. Powerful.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  9. My husband is a numbers person, too. Me, not so much. But I like the exercise of asking for work and then doing something good for someone else. Karma.

    My Christmas cactuses are just now getting buds.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I posted this pic on Insta as well and I was surprised by how many are getting early blooms. I truly hope it's not a foreboding of some kind.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  10. Thirty pills a day, good grief! I hope they aren't affecting your creativity and general joie de vivre. Yes, isn't it great to be past the survival years and free to use our brains any way we want?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. None of them are supposedly brain altering, I avoid those Nick but possibly in other ways, I don't know. An awful day today.

      XO
      WWW

      Delete
  11. Indeed. I was wondering if they are affecting your memory, physical ability. Do you ever get confused about if something is real, or an illusion? Many pills do that, and then the doctor prescribes something to treat that side effect, but oh then this one causes some other side effect and so on and so on and...30. One very common drug often give proactively foro heart disease (meaning you're given it to prevent) in fact causes strokes, vision problems, memory loss, muscle pain and disorientation. These side effects can be fleeting, and then you're good for a few days and wham, happens again. It's not disease, it's medication.

    ReplyDelete
  12. There is a just-released 2019 list but it's behind paywall:

    BEERS revised: Drugs not to use in older adults.

    https://www.guidelinecentral.com/summaries/american-geriatrics-society-2015-updated-beers-criteria-for-potentially-inappropriate-medication-use-in-older-adults/#section-420

    ReplyDelete
  13. Yes, turmeric is great for supporting a healthy inflammatory response. However, absorption is challenging, and supplement forms that are hydro-soluble absorb better.

    ReplyDelete

Comments are welcome.

Email me at wisewebwomanatgmaildotcom if you're having trouble.